Favorite films

  • Badlands
  • Cléo from 5 to 7
  • Sherman's March
  • Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives

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  • Murina

    ★★★★

  • Both Sides of the Blade

    ★★★½

  • Ginger Snaps

    ★★★½

  • Free Solo

    ★★★

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  • Crime Wave

    Crime Wave

    ★★★★½

    Delightful wacky gem; pretty much invented Guy Maddin. The hell is going on in the forks of Winnipeg to repeatedly churn out talent like these two and Matthew Rankin?

    According to Paisz, it also may have influenced the Coens for Barton Fink, since his distributors sent them a copy. Same story of a frustrated writer toiling away in an invented film genre.

    The difference is that Crimewave is oddly inspiring, a tale of Hollywood iconography broken free and sprouted again…

  • Miami Vice

    Miami Vice

    ★★★★½

    This was the golden age of shaky cam and Michael Mann was getting even weirder than Greengrass, with a distinct digital video look and all kinds of jarring angles, low light, and wide lenses. This movie is long, very serious in tone, and difficult, and I remember it splitting opinions when it was released.

    Mann is funny because he came right out of the gate with polished precision with Thief, and can do smooth gravitas so well, but seems to…

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  • Murina

    Murina

    ★★★★

    Puts the suspend in suspense. Reminds me a little of Knife in the Water in that it is languorous, watery, slippery, and perpetually on edge. And speaking of monstrous men...

    Also I was vaguely reminded of The Wonders because they share a coming of age element and a Mediterranean sunny beauty, and turns out they share a cinematographer! Definitely making a note of Hélène Louvart, who is the common thread in a many of the arthouse gems of the past decade.

  • Both Sides of the Blade

    Both Sides of the Blade

    ★★★½

    Chaque phrase est une souffle. Its relative wordiness in comparison with the rest of Denis' work maybe makes it seem a little thin. Stifled words and outbursts, mutually pathetic bourgeois Parisians. Tindersticks' score working overtime to instill dread. Vincent Lindon is a whole lotta man. Discours on race a little headscratching, Lindon not letting his son get a word in edgewise. Still enjoyed.

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  • Chameleon Street

    Chameleon Street

    ★★★★½

    A legendary work in black indie cinema—for the few who have even heard of it. It famously failed to find distribution after winning a jury prize at Sundance, even though Warner Bros bought the remake rights for $250,000. Director Wendell Harris claims that though it was initially shown on television regularly, further broadcasts were actively suppressed after 1994. Apparently it was too confrontational for any major studio or network to touch.

    It's a major loss, because this film is awesome.…

  • Cairo Station

    Cairo Station

    ★★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Did not expect to get such a condensed (77 min.) and virtuosic exploration of mental illness, the workings of a Cairo train station, union politics, Marxism, feminism, sexual harassment, domestic abuse...all told with a stylistic mix of neorealism, film noir, and Hitchcockian psychodrama.

    Covers almost all of the isms, really, but never feels forced. The way the camera moves through the different characters and stories in the station is very natural. The whole thing is bustling with life.

    As to…